Factors to Consider When Choosing a Pallet Gate for Your Workplace
Pallet gates are safety gates that provide safe access to plant platforms and mezzanines from sections opened or removed to the age to allow access of pallets and forklifts. They are a form of fall protection that protects your employees from additional fall hazards when working at heights. These gates can be automated, spring loaded, or manually operated.
Pallet gates are of different kinds and sizes, and it can be quite a challenge choosing the right gate for your situation. You don’t want to buy a product designed to protect your employees from falling only to realise it doesn’t function within your workflow or fit perfectly. Avoid giving your workforce a false sense of security by ensuring you purchase and install the right pallet gate. Below are essential factors to consider when choosing pallet gates for your workplace. Please read on.
1. Available Space for Mounting
Plant platforms and mezzanines come in all sizes and shapes. It’s important to check whether you have enough space to mount the gate before purchasing one. Check to see if you have room to either slide the pallet gate horizontally or vertically. This will enable you to narrow down the available options hence make an informed decision. Some pallet gates can connect directly to existing railings or mount to walls. But you can also have yours customised to your needs.
2. The Direction of Traffic
The main purpose of the gates is to protect the openings of elevated platforms where items are being moved on or off. Knowing which direction the traffic is moving is very crucial. In some instances, loading usually occurs from the floor up, while others from the platform to the floor. While pallets can go both ways, some gates can only allow traffic to go in a specific direction. Therefore, ensure to check the product literature to be certain.
3. The Size of Pallet
Pallets range in sizes. To choose the right pallet gate for your platform or mezzanine, ensure to note the size of materials you intend to load on the pallet. Start by calculating the typical height of the pallet and materials being loaded. Consider also the possibility of materials hanging off the sides of the pallet. Once you have determined the size of the pallet and materials, customise your gate to fit.
4. Consider Any Hazardous Materials On-Site
Are you handling hazardous materials on-site? This is a very essential factor to consider for proper risk management in the workplace. Some pallet gates come with electric mechanisms, which make them prone to potential sparks. This could cause fires and explosions, especially if they are installed next to flammable substances. Arrange for proper risk assessment before deciding on the type of pallets and the finish to install.
The Bottom Line
Having the right pallet gate is never enough. You need to also plan how you intend to keep your employees safe while using the gate. Being a form of fall protection, you need to train your workers on the proper use of the equipment and develop administrative controls to prevent or reduce the possibilities of error. Encourage your workers to always close the gate while in the platform and after they have completed their task.